Table Mountain National Park, Cape Point
You can’t live in Cape Town – or visit it often – and not go to Cape Point! This rocky promontory, feared by seafarers like Da Gama and Dias, is one of the most dramatic viewpoints in the country and a true wilderness close to the city. Ask for a map at the gate: The main road gets straight to the point, so to speak, but it’s worth turning off to some beautiful bays and views. Stop at the Buffelsfontein information centre to show the kids some whale bones on display and to take a bathroom break.
Head back to the main road, drive 2 km and turn left to have breakfast with the baboons at Buffels Bay. You can swim in the tidal pool here if you’re feeling brave. Go back to the main road again and turn right to Platboom Beach, a well-known surf spot. Look for the Dias Cross on the way there. At Platboom you can walk in the white dunes and daydream with your eyes on the horizon. It’s almost time for the grand finale, but first visit Pegram’s Point, Neptune’s Dairy and the Cape of Good Hope – all great viewpoints – for some dramatic selfies.
From the Cape of Good Hope viewpoint, you can hike along the coast to Cape Point (about 2 km) or you can follow the main road back to the Two Oceans restaurant. The restaurant isn’t too pricey for Cape Town (R1S fora cup of coffee; R65 fora glass of wine) and the view is awesome. From the restaurant, it’s a strenuous uphill walk to the lighthouse. If grandpa is joining you for the day, consider a ride on the Flying Dutchman funicular (return ticket R65 per adult; R25 per child). Hold onto your hat at the old lighthouse at the top – the wind pumps around the point. If you want to go even further south, walk down to the new lighthouse, which feels like it’s at the end of the earth. Then take your new windswept hairstyle home.
How to get there? The entrance gate is about 60 km south of Cape Town.
Gate times: 7 am to 5 pm.